Musical Surroundings MYDAC II

Musical Surroundings MYDAC II

Michael Yee's newly patented design delivers a very analogue sound

“If you’re an analog-only audiophile who has listened to a lot of DACs but never heard one that sounds right to your ears, you may want to give the MYDAC II a try. It could be the DAC that makes it possible for you to enjoy digital for the first time.” – Steven Stone, The Absolute Sound

“The MYDAC II has stunning performance. It captures low level information better than any DAC in its price range and surpasses the performance of many DAC’s far more expensive than the… price Musical Surroundings is offering it at.” – Audio Direction

Mike Yee’s patented digital reconstruction technology, developed over the past 3 years, is software driven, executed with a FPGA or field programmable gate array. The ability to recover low level musical, textural and spatial information buried in digital music files allows the MYDAC II to reveal new levels of musical information and enjoyment.

The MYDAC II features 3 inputs including USB for computer audio up to 96 KHz and S/PDIF for high resolution files up to 192KHz. The design allows future upgradability but the strength of this new technology is the unmatched “analog-like” sound it creates with existing Redbook CD, compressed digital music files such as MP3, and internet music sources.

Digital audio and analog audio have very different distortion characteristics. Digital distortion is lowest as the signals are largest, the distortion is the highest when the signal is small. Analog is completely different, it's distortion is the highest when the signal is the largest and smallest when the signal is small.

To improve the low level resolution of digital playback, a new recovery method (patent pending) was developed to significantly improves the low level resolution. Basically, it is a reconstruction technique that alters only the sub quantization changes in the signal - not hugely different than standard reconstruction, however it is highly optimized for musical signals.

The results are surprising. Listeners expecting to hear the equal musicality of LP experience fidelity only reserved for analog master tape. This digital reconstruction technology is a game changer. Even compressed audio can be extremely good.

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The SPDIF receiver (coax and TosLink) allows all sample rates between 32kHz to 192kHz, resolution 16bits to 24bit. The MYDAC2 does not support higher than 48kHz/16bit sample rate for USB.

The digital signal processing is done in an FPGA in order to minimize jitter. Using an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) allows for complete control timing of the signal processing and removes another jitter source.

The DAC chipset is the TI PCM1798, delta sigma.

The output filter uses low distortion audio opamps from TI (old National Semiconductor). This is the first Michael Yee design using "integrated op amps". These op amps are a high quality affordable implementation to introduce this new digital technology.

Read the TAS review here

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